Samoa to be TE SubCom base for Pacific subsea cable maintenance
05 February 2018 | Alan Burkitt-Gray
TE SubCom is to build a depot in Samoa as a maintenance centre to service 20 Pacific subsea cable systems.
The announcement follows a five-year deal in March 2017 between TE SubCom and 15 cable operators to support and maintain more than 51,000km of telecoms and power cables.
James Herron, managing director marine operations at TE SubCom, said: “We’re investing long-term in the South Pacific region and this new depot demonstrates our commitment to supporting our clientele in the area.”
TE SubCom will build the depot in the Samoan port of Apia, with Samoa Submarine Cable Company (SSCC). “We look forward to TE SubCom’s expanded presence in the region and the increased services this new depot will provide,” said Emmanuel Delanoue, CEO of SSCC.
The South Pacific Marine Maintenance Agreement (SPMMA) covers the South Pacific region from Singapore in the west to Tahiti in the east and from the southernmost point of New Zealand to Hawaii in the north – an area of 72 million square km.
TE SubCom will use the cable ship Reliance and the facilities at Apia, including 4,000 square metres of covered warehouse storage, six cable tanks with over 1100 cubic metres of storage for cable, and storage for optical equipment, jointing kits and test equipment.
Samoan prime minister Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi welcomed the plan: “The submarine cable depot aligns with Samoa’s aspiration to position itself as a submarine cable hub for island nations seeking to bridge the digital divide and improve internet connectivity for their people.”